Thursday, March 20, 2014

The gourmetization of pizza.

There are two persistent facts about today's Cambridge:
  1. Our knowledge workers are becoming smarter, more innovative, and more valuable in today's economy.
  2. Pizza is becoming more expensive.
In Inman Square, a slice of cheese pizza now costs $3 at All Star Pizza Bar. 

Three dollars for a slice of pizza?

"That'll be $3, please."
Clearly, All Star has found a way to break through that precarious barrier, the one that said pizza was only a basic urban food item -- quick to get, cheap to buy. 

Entirely new, exactly like you remember it

What All Star so correctly saw is that a sufficient amount of flattery can make the price of pizza rise from a greasy commodity to gourmet pleasure -- not by changing pizza but by changing people's sense of what it means to eat it.  When pizza becomes cool, people will pay for cool.  Cambridge, a city of over-education, is also at times a city of over self-congratulation. 

The place to be

To the cynic, H.L. Mencken's bitterly brilliant quip comes to mind, that no one ever went broke by underestimating the intelligence of the American public.  In a city with so much intelligence, it's a good bet that a lot of dough will be raised with just that additional pinch of praise.